Child Abuse, Referral and Evaluation (CARE) Clinic

The Child Abuse, Referral and Evaluation (CARE) Clinic is the outpatient clinical service of Safe Place. The CARE Clinic evaluates children and adolescents for possible sexual abuse, physical abuse or neglect. The CARE Clinic is staffed by a team of physicians, social workers and mental health clinicians.

Our services

  • We take a medical history, from the parent or caregiver, as well as a history of why your child was referred to the CARE Clinic.
  • We complete physical examinations, including the anal and genital areas, when appropriate.
  • During the physical examination, we may use special equipment called a colposcope to better visualize the anal and genital areas.
  • Depending upon the clinic location, we may utilize our telemedicine system to provide our clinical care, ensuring access to our specialty services, regardless of location.
  • We may talk with your child alone, usually briefly.
  • We have mental health clinicians on our team, who may meet you and discuss a plan for counseling.
  • We offer testing for sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy when indicated.

Investigative agencies and other services

We work closely with child welfare and law enforcement investigators to ensure that all children and families receive any needed services. The local child advocacy centers

Philadelphia Children’s Alliance for residents of Philadelphia CountyMission Kids for residents of Montgomery CountyDelaware County Children’s Advocacy Center for residents in Delaware County and Bucks County Children’s Advocacy Center for residents of Bucks County are often used to conduct forensic interviews and to provide service planning.

If there is an investigation about possible abuse of your child, we may ask you to sign medical information release forms, which give us permission to update the Child Advocacy Center team about your child’s appointment in the CARE Clinic.

Safe Place Treatment and Support Program

If your child has been seen at CHOP CARE Clinic, or at the CHOP Emergency Department or other clinical site that one of our CHOP Safe Place physicians has provided care to your child for abuse-related concerns, you may schedule a consultation appointment with one of our mental health clinicians (a psychologist or a clinical social worker). The purpose of the consultation appointment is to identify your child’s treatment needs and options. Depending on your child’s needs, our therapists may provide a course of trauma-focused therapy (Trauma-Focused Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy); a brief (one to six session) parent psychoeducation and support intervention; and/or referrals and resources to other behavioral health specialists.

For information about topics related to child sexual abuse/assault, including typical reactions children have, how parents can positively respond to their child’s needs, and ways of promoting safety for your child, visit our  Resources.